Okami is considered one of the greatest releases of that generation by many people. Clover Studio’s action adventure release directed by Hideki Kamiya won over many hearts across the world when it launched on PS2 over 10 years ago. It eventually made its way to Wii in 2008 but the real place it could shine was on the PS3 in the form of Okami HD 5 years ago.
Capcom isn’t a stranger to remasters and remakes and while I’m not a fan of some of the choices for games to port and remaster, Okami deserves to be played by as many people as possible. At this stage, I think the only game from last generation which hasn’t been ported to current generation from Capcom is Asura’s Wrath. Okami HD’s latest incarnation sees the PS3 PSN exclusive get released on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.
Okami has you controlling Amaterasu in a lush watercolour world that has visuals you will not forget. Animation is slick and there’s a definite inspiration from Japanese folklore and traditional illustration. Okami HD is a sight to behold in motion. Gameplay wise, this is similar to The Legend of Zelda. In fact it was funny seeing Okami get awards over The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess back in 2006 because of how much inspiration Okami takes. But the awards were all warranted. There’s a lot to love with the gameplay and the paintbrush mechanic. On the PS4, you can use the touchpad for the brush controls. It takes some time to get used to but feels great after a few attempts.
The PS3 release was already downsampling so it is no surprise to see Okami HD on PS4 and Xbox One offer a 4K output for the Pro and X releases on 4K displays. Visually, nothing really has changed from the PS3 version but that isn’t a bad thing. The one thing that is worth pointing out is this is a 30fps release. As with most PS2 games, game logic and animation are tied to framerate and it was not feasible for Capcom to uncap the frame rate and offer a good experience. I wasn’t expecting it either given the super low price point but it was worth mentioning. We’ve seen near full priced remasters from the PS2 era have a 30fps lock as well like Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age.
Since this is essentially a rerelease of a PS3 HD port, I was expecting a bit more in terms of extras. A lot of re releases or remasters from Capcom have art galleries or music players. None of those exist here. I would’ve loved to have a few interviews with Clover Studio or HexaDrive about the porting and development process for the port. It is great to be able to play it in the original 4:3 aspect ratio but I wanted a bit more in terms of extras. Remakes like Full Throttle Remastered offer full director’s commentary while you’re playing offering longtime fans a reason to replay the game.
Okami HD is a fantastic release. It is super cheap on consoles and has aged brilliantly. While I did want a bit more in terms of extras, if you haven’t experienced this release, you are missing out. Any fan of adventure games and The Legend of Zelda owes it to themselves to pick this up. It offers a lot of gameplay that never gets boring with smart puzzles, boss fights, and a plethora of amazing designs across the board.